“Officials for the moment say they cannot pinpoint anything malicious about the extraordinary outage of the Nasdaq stock exchange earlier today,” Byron Acohido reports for USDA Today.

“But the incident had all the earmarks of the three waves of denial-of-service attacks that have bedeviled U.S. financial institutions, including stock brokerages, since last September,” Acohido reports. “‘My first thought is that it is a denial-of-service attack, but I’m not sure,’ says Gartner banking security analyst Avivah Litan. ‘It’s a very attractive target. It’s very visible, and that’s what these Iranian state attacks are all about, making a political statement by disrupting a visible website.'”

Acohido reports, “The first wave of denial-of-service attacks attributed to the Cyber Fighters of Izz ad-Din al-Qassam began last September and lasted about six weeks. Knocked offline for various periods of time were Wells Fargo, U.S. Bank, Bank of America, JPMorgan Chase & Co. and PNC Bank. The second wave commenced in December and lasted seven weeks, knocking out mid-tier banks and credit unions. And a third wave of high-powered denial-of-service attacks commenced in March targeting credit card companies and financial brokerages. ‘I don’t have any inside knowledge, but I think this one (Nasdaq) is political, as well,’ Litan says.”

Read more in the full article here.

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